Jhatke matke

Saw laavni for the first time live. I had seen it earlier on TV but this was something entirely different . The annual Spic macay convention is being held in our campus. Maya Jadhav a very famed artist of this field had come to perform along with her troupe.

And what a troupe. I should’nt be saying this but some of them were real beauties. And laavni as far as i understand began with the shringar rasa and that is its forte. And the women really knew the moves. i took some niiice pics ;).

After the laavni was a sufiana vocal rendition by the wadali brothers. The change was a little drastic …from the body to the spirit. Sufi music really moves my heart. Though purists may consider it as a measly stepbrother to the pure classical and categorise it as light music, i think it has more soul than most of the other styles. Most of the musical styles developed under the wings of kings and patrons. Even dance forms had either the king or few rich ppl as its primary customer. But sufi music was not intended for audience. It was not intended to be technically perfect. It was a way to reach god. When a dervesh began to sing and dance, gradually going into trance, it was a way to reach god.

THough the pure intentions of the sufi saints has been diluted but sufi music still has a component which comes from the heart.

trappings ?

In how many brochures or application forms have you seen written, “we do not discriminate between people on the basis of caste, creed, age, gender, sexual orientation etc etc….etcetra…”

Why on the earth do they dont do that….i think its because we have not got any control over our caste, creed, race or gender. So heres my thought is’nt intelligence out of our control…arent we predestined to have a particular I.Q. Now some may say that I.Q. is not the actual measure of intelligence, and i would agree. But how much can a person imporve his intelligence ? I know this is a unanswerable question since one would never know if the intelligence is increasing or if the person is only utilizing it to the fullest.

In the present age a lot of importance is given to intelligence. From entrance into kindergarten to job interviews. But the fact is intelligence is a double edged sword. A intelligent person could do you harm if s/he intends to. Is’nt honesty, compassion etc better attributes?

Through the ages we have treated intelligence as the scale by which we can proudly say, we are different/better than animals. But what has intelligence done for us. It has definitely made appliances which has made our lives easier, but are’nt these secondary.We would been as happy hanging from trees on our tails. Its the human beings intelligence which is responsible for ‘n’ number of problems today.

The point I am trying to make is, ” intelligence is characterised by the structure of our brains, maybe it is hereditary, but in any case we do not have much control over it.” But many other qualities like ability to love others, honesty, etc etc can be imbibed in oneself. Or can they …I am not sure, what if they are controlled by some genes too….? Then it would closely mirror what hindu philosophy says that” everything is fated.” Because whatever we do would be due to rungs of our DNA. So the final thought is are we limited by what we are?

ahemm…

I had resisted the temptations. For what seems like ages, i had kept myself from watching the crappy prints of ROTK. Finally today i got hold of a dvd-rip. Its been exhausting. For three hours in a row, alone, as everyone else had seen it a few times already and i got no company.

Though the novelty of the sets, of the animated trolls, had gone, i still found myself moved much more than the earlier parts. There is something very moving about people doing their karma without want of selfish consequences.

The theory of doing ones duty without fear of death, is a win win situation if one rally believes in it. If one dies its with the satisfaction of having done something noble. I can imagine the thoughts of a soldier, of the few ones left defending their castle from the sieging enemy. The experience-hoary warrior knows, he’s done for.

if i may…

“” The pain is like the stinging of a 1000 bees. I can’t move my hands or legs, but i feel the energy, the warm glow which is my heart. The colors in front of my eyes are like the ribbons my mother used to buy for my younger sister. I have not been to meet her for the last 2 years. May she be happy. My mind must have been scrambled egg when i cursed her for having eloped with J. You could have just asked me J. Anyway his business is going on well, may they be happy forever.””

The heart stops. But the brain has a few more minutes. Till it squeezes out the last bubble of oxygen.
“What am i doing here sitting beside the river. Mother must be mad by now. Its always like this. Whenever i come to the river to fetch water the reflections on the greenish water holds be enthralled. I see myself in the water. I stoop on the boulder till my hair touches the water. Then it feels like my hair continues into that of the reflection. Who is this girl. I lift up my head. That boy is standing behind the bushes. He’s been following me since a week and hides beneath the bush when i come to the river. He thinks i havent seen him.”

A small stone falls into the water. Rippling the reflections till it becomes almost irrecognisable. The brain sputters, chokes for oxygen.

Is time quantised or is it just me?

Mother nature and her errant child

There are scientists claiming to have cloned a human baby. There has been a lot of debate going on over this issue. But the underlining question among this and a large number of other issues is,” Is interfering with mother nature right?”

Here I am assuming that there is a force which is regulating the life forces. THough it is very difficult to attribute properties to it, but the fact that communities all over the world in different times and cultures (not being influenced by each other) have in one form or other been worshipping (which implies acknowledging its existence) mother nature, has to be taken into account.

You may call it mother nature or scientifically refer to it as the “theory of evolution”, which may need corollaries still not formed for it too totally encompass the realm of mother nature. BUt one thing is certain if there is one such thing, either it has some limitations or something more powerful has taken control. An ecosystem which has millions of species of which one specie “progresses by leaps and bounds” while others get squashed in its way, either is going in the wrong direction. Or maybe that is what it intends, and if that is the case we are just puppets.

We do not have to go any farther than the school science book to see the flaw. The food chain, of insects camouflaging etc etc etc…clearly show a wonderful interrelation of different species, which more often than not are at a peaceful equilibrium. Why would nature want one of them to take over and pollute the system. I wonder if nature did’nt approve of man discovering fire. If humans are no more than a curious child, who finds something in parents’ secret closet which it should not have.

What i am arriving at is the question, “Is there a need for the society, nations etc .etc..with which humans have encroached over the overall realm of mother nature?” Its obvious that the values which have been established It may seem heretic but I am forfeiting my place as a human while writing this and you can consider me as an alien from outer space or the plumber of mother nature who has got the job of removing the obstructions and fixing the leaks. So i am not giving any special considerations to humans.

From the plumbers viewpoint i would say i would rather take some intelligence from humans and share that among some other less fortunate species. Well here i am assuming that it is the intelligence of humans which is making it progress at the cost of other species. For all i know it could happen as Douglas Adams made the dolphins say,”BYe bye and thank you for all the fish “, when apocalypse finally came.

All these ponderings are because of a previous post, which led to a healthy debate with nandini. Well from a human beings viewpoint (who lives in a society/nation, and is a [good] productive member of it)it is right to say, quote,” there are good value systems and bad value systems”. But good for whom and bad for whom. And good and bad are in themselves too subjective, for my comfort. Good always winning over evil, does sound similar to, the victor being always good. For the effecient running of a society there has to be defined, good and bad value systems. I totally agree with this. But value systems change with cultures and times. So if a persons individual values clash with the present values of the society s/he is living, who is the one to blame and who is the one to suffer, for this clash? It was just probabilistic that the person was born in that system. The same values could have made him a normal unit in another place and time.

Nandini says “Robbing a bank will land you in jail. More importantly, if it was considered alright to rob banks, you wouldn’t have anything protecting your right to property at all, and someone else could just as easily re-rob that money from you, right? ” I wont go into bank robberies but there are plentiful of “bad” ways with which you could make easy and “tainted” money. Probability of landing into jail for the person with right connections or just enough money is the same as of a meteorite crashing onto his head. Society would never think it alright for their money to get robbed. But what do you think will happen if a money van gets into a accident and bags of cash lie strewn on the road. Everytime a riot occurs, like the recent one in gujarat, people come in cars and loot clothes off a departmental store like pantaloon.

“values which make one’s life better are good values, and those which make one’s life worse are bad values”. The quote more or less sums up deciding the value for a individual. But i would suggest changing the “better life” with happiness. Because now this wuold encompass everything, even other individuals. If a person cares about other people and decides to forfeit something which makes his life a little worse but benefits other. Then the joy out of that compensates for his personal loss.

” there are no societal rights or values that’s independent from individual rights or values. Individuals with shared values come together to form a community or a nation.”
Then what becomes of the minority who dont share there values but get to share the nation. Take for example the DMSC (Durbar Mahila Samanay Committee) of Shonagachi, red light area in Kolkata. I recently got to see ,’tale of the night fairies’, by Shohini ghosh. The DMSC is an organisation formed by the sex workers themselves. So DMSC had organised a carnival for themselves in some stadium. Initially the city official didnt give them permission to go on. They had tremendous pressure from women’s committees all over from the country to prevent this sort of “immoral activity”. The carnival eventually did happen, with all its musical chairs and sweetmeats. There was a kind of conference where some woman from a NGO had come there to know their problems and “save” them from their plight. She said something to the effect that, “prostitution is a crime against woman.” Well i think this is the value held by majority of indians, at least the women. Just as she made this statement, one sex worker stood up and said that it was no crime. On the other hand she argued, that sex was in fact pleasurable and getting paid for it was the icing on the cake. Clearly their values do not match. But the comedy of prostitution remaining illegal in India for so much time is due to the majority.

It has to be noted that compared to bombay’s red light area, which is more or less totally controlled by the underworld, in Shonagachi the women are mostly free. The thought that a woman would prefer prostitution to say some “moral” proffession like manual labour, without any forcing would be hard to swallow by a lot of people. The point i am trying to make is when people tend to force their values on to others, just because they are in the majority it becomes somewhat fascist. Just as long as the minority’s value is not too hurting to the majority. I say, to everyone his..err…her own.

Dog eat Dog

Its a dog eat dog world, they say these days. Do dogs eat dog, for real. I once saw a bitch killing its own puppy once when i the hairs had not sprouted on my upper lips. But through later inputs from NGC i propound lack of food for the bitch, leading to lack of milk for its pups and maybe she thought better a few healthy then a litter of sickly ones.

Continuing on the same thought, does man eat man. Yes he does. In some places in africa or the mid pacifics. Africa is not what it once was. Impenetrable forests and “wild” tribes. Researchers have gone there and we have seen there rituals sitting in our drawing rooms. So why is cannibalism abhored the way it is. As calvin puts it isnt murdering someone and not eating the flesh, a total waste.

Please let me assure you i am not a wannabe Idi Ameen. I am just trying to see if behind our present day values, there is any logic, or are they just probabilistic. Or is it an evolutionary thing. In this at least i think it is evolutionary from whatever i have seen in NGC (they should offer a diploma course). The idea is simple. Some germs are more likely to effect a particular specie. So cannibalism leads to a lot of infection. Sometimes the wiping out of a whole tribe (again NGC). So its much safer to eat other species than your own.

I wonder if the danger of infection was not there in the first place, where would we be today.

Objective/Subjective

During my primary classes, we had to cram one line answers.

Q.Where does the sun set?
Ans.The sun sets in the west.
Now if we think we have defined the directions (east/west) according to the direction of rotation of earth, hence of rising and setting suns. So actually the answer should be,”Where the sun sets is west”. Gradually we started getting objective questions, like fill in the blanks, matching, one words etc. But there were also subjective questions like write an essay on “The library”. The objectives were high risk high gain options. The subjectives were on the other hand easier to answer but difficult to score on.

Having dealed with subjectives and objectives for the last 17 years, i had never once really realized there meaning.

We generally go out for dosas and south indian coffee at dawn after a night out. The mess is run by a tamil family with everyone involved in the business. Aunty, their son, uncle and helpers. The son goes to college. Anyway we have become friendly with them and it is heretic to go somewhere else to have the morning breaker. But this mess closes at abt 8. So on such an occasion i suggested another place which offered dosas till abt 10. My friend asked me if the dosas there were any good. Normally i stay away from these questions, because of the different mophologies of palates. I jokingly said that it was a subjective question and i can only say that i like them. He disagreed that it was very objective, either the dosas were good or they were’nt. I knew in my heart that this was specious.

Then i thought about it. And the following reasoning makes sense.
Objective is where the outcome is decided by the object. The objects properties decide the outcome. Here the dosas size or price were objective. Anyone with a ruler must measure it the same. But how we percieve its taste depends on our palates. And here the subject is “taste”. Hence taste is subjective. Though chemical properties of the dosa has an influence on its taste but how we percieve it depends on us.

And this leads to truth. What is true? I believe there are two kinds of truth. A personal truth (which tends to be subjective) and a general truth (which is close to objective).
A friend once remarked,” Prostitution is disgusting.” Actually what he subconsciously meant was, he thinks prostitution is disgusting. But when i told him this he didnt agree. When i asked him to objectively prove that prostitution is desgusting he could not. Because everything comes to a subjective dead end.

If everyone realized that ones own truth may not be true for the next then the number of conflicts would decrease tremendously.
Oh, know i think i have gone overboard.

COMMENTS

fodder for the mind! thanks for the comment on my blog! visitors are always a pleasure…atithi devo baha and all that ! 😉
geebaby